Here at WCCFTech we have taken a fancy to Sandybridge offerings from MSI. We really liked the C43, had good things to say about the GD65, concluded that the E23 was a decent office/ productivity board. Today we have the latest offering from MSI, based on the newest member of the x6x family, the Z68.

Socket LGA 1155
Processor Support All LGA 1155 Processors
Segment Mid Range
Size ATX
Memory DDR3 4 Slots / 32 GB
Features Military Grade Components 

Active Phase Switching

OC Genie

Onboard Power, Reset, & OC Genie Buttons

On-Board points for voltage monitoring (V-Check)

Multi GPU Support (Xfire & SLi)

EFI Driven Menu

Dual EFI

Lucid's Virtu Software Support

Intel Smart Response Technology

Integrated SandyBridge Graphics

Slots PCI-e x16 (2) (x16 or x8,x8) 

PCI-e x1 (3)


Overclocking Yes (Both Processor & Graphics Core)
I/O USB 2.0 & USB 3.0 

SATA 6Gbps

Realtek LAN

The Z68

Z68 is what the P67 should have been. Z68 unlike the P67 and like the H6x chipsets allows the use of and over-clock the graphics core within the second generation core processors. Like the P67 and unlike the H6x, it can also over-clock the processor core (or more correctly over-clock memory). Thus Z68 is a sum of P67 and H6x. Intel added a couple of extras to make Z68 relevant.

A cursory glance at the diagram will reveal that Z68 allows for the use of onboard graphics dye. A more interesting feature is the “Intel Smart Response Technology”. This allows the use of a (small capacity; maximum of ~60GB) SSD to complement hard disk performance. In fact Intel sells a specific SSD model (based on SLC) to serve this purpose. Apart from this, there is nothing new here. It is basically an H6x and P67 hybrid. More correctly is P67 which allows processor core over-clocking.

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